Promoted as a "crossroads" fight, Diego Sanchez returned to the cage tonight (Sat., Mar. 15, 2014) at UFC 171: "Hendricks vs. Lawler" at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, to battle upstart Myles Jury. The idea was if Sanchez could win, he would prove he's got plenty left in the tank, and if Jury could win, he would prove he's ready for a big step up in the lightweight division.
Well get to stepping, Mr. Jury.
Sanchez got clipped with a hard shot that stunned him early, but he recovered quickly. So quickly, in fact, that he was begging Jury to come in on him and engage in a war. Myles didn't take the bait, of course, but he did get clipped himself when Diego rushed in on him.
Take one to give one.
After the first round, Jury had avoided getting into the firefight Sanchez was trying to bait him into, all while scoring with effective offense of his own, including some hard punches, a head kick or two, and a takedown.
Then, in the second, he started getting the better of the exchanges, including opening a cut on Sanchez's face. Diego pushed forward, swinging wild like he usually does, but his flailing arms weren't finding their target.
Later in the round, "The Dream" tried to finish the fight with a guillotine choke but he couldn't lock it in tight. To confirm this, Jury gave a thumbs up while he was caught in the hold.
Headed back to his corner, Diego's face was a bloody mess.
The final frame featured Jury working a steady strategy of staying active but never putting himself in too much danger. Put simply, he was just better.
Sanchez jumped a guillotine in the closing seconds of the contest, but obviously it wasn't enough.
Final scores from the judges: 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28
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